Selling or Serving

Randall Davey

 The financial services industry is teeming with salespeople whose job is to peddle financial products to consumers. Most representatives are trained to prospect, pitch and close, dismantle objections and secure the sale. However, the late John Bogle, founder of the Vanguard Fund and author of The Battle for the Soul of Capitalism (Yale University Press, 2005), decried the intersection of sales and financial services where products are sold in silos, divorced from a comprehensive plan. 

There are other advisors, however, who embrace a different model: one of serving, not selling. They engage a client to serve by listening, teaching, coaching and problem solving. Here are a few of the differences between classically trained advisors and servant-leader-advisors. 

Servant-leader-advisors are, first and foremost, empathetic, therapeutic listeners. Their goal is to understand whether a client is driven by fear, greed, or purpose. They listen for the “why” behind every asset the client owns and are eager to understand the ways in which financial products, plans and strategies align with the client’s purpose in life. 

Second, they are analyst-teachers. They don’t offer baseless assessments or opinions that are not grounded in research and knowledge. Instead, they gather every data point essential to a comprehensive financial plan before trying to solve a financial problem. They especially value client education, encouraging investors to read, participate in webinars and learn the nuances of their plan. This is never truer than when they teach personalized, holistic investing. 

Third, they are coaches. It’s widely known that the big risk to any retirement plan is the investor. Investors tend to get restless and change strategies frequently, then suffer the results. A good coach will help a client understand why holding to a sound strategy is in her or his best interest. 

Fourth, they are collaborators. They are humble enough to know they don’t know everything. They gladly work with other professionals to deliver the best holistic care possible. 

So, the members of our team do not sell financial products. We provide financial products to support a purpose-driven plan for life and money. 

Randall E. Davey, CAP® is a financial advisor with Guide Advisors, Inc. In certain circumstances, he may offer insurance as a sole proprietor or through Guide Advisors, Inc. Randall can be reached at or by phone at 206-486-2477. 

Advisory services are offered through Guide Advisors, Inc., a Registered Investment Advisor in Washington, and other jurisdictions in which it may conduct business. The information contained herein should in no way be construed or interpreted as a solicitation to sell or offer to sell advisory services to any residents of any State other than the states listed above or where otherwise legally permitted. All written content is for information purposes only. It is not intended to provide any tax or legal advice or provide the basis for any financial decisions. The information contained in this material has been derived from sources believed to be reliable but is not guaranteed as to accuracy and completeness and does not purport to be a complete analysis of the materials discussed. 

Guide Advisors, Inc. 19125 North Creek Parkway, Suite 120, Bothell, WA 98011 206.486.2477